Noilly Prattle: Good Value for the money...

Monday, March 12, 2012

Good Value for the money...

.... or (good bang for the buck)

Tonight I heard voices of the gods...or so it seemed.

There was a memorial concert at the music school just around the corner for the victims of the monster earthquake and tsunami that hit northeastern Japan a year ago. The choice of music, Mozart's Requiem, inspired us to attend the concert. That and the fact that it is just a 2-minute walk from our apartment. This Requiem is one of my favorites of Mozart's many compositions, but I didn't really understand why until I heard it played in this particular venue and with this particular group of fine musicians.

The concert hall struck me immediately for its visual impact. It was rather small and intimate and the interior design looked as if it had been done by a professional interior decorator in muted earth tones offset with blue and accents of wood and metal in the the organ pipes. It was a very pleasant space. But it didn't prepare me for the quality of the musicians and the acoustics in the auditorium. Words are inadequate except to note that it felt like being immersed in a bath of sound.

It was Mozart's Requiem without any doubt, but it occurred to me that this composition isn't really a dirge for the dead, it is a clarion call to the living. It is Mozart's final legacy to us, his final tonic bang. He seems to be saying: “Look , (or more accurately, listen) this is what it's like among the immortals.” In the Milos Forman film Amadeus (above link) the aged semi-demented Salieri admits that, in his music Mozart had heard “the voice of God”, but that he himself can not, and can only bear witness to the existence of (and assist in the link below) the godlike creative spirits who perhaps give definition to our idea of Creation.

the process of creating Mozart's Requiem in the movie "Amadeus"

Hearing this outstanding performance sounded and felt like being in a small moment of that ongoing Creation.

We had been informed before the performance that there would be no applause since it was a memorial concert. Instead, there followed a moment of thunderous silence which, to my mind, sounded louder than any standing ovation could have.

Not bad value for about 500 Czech Kronas—for two.


Anonymous said...

Noilly Prattle said...


Anonymous said...

ok, didn't expect THAT response…and…it means ??

Noilly Prattle said...

Thank you very much.